Art2011 Prize Winners Announced!

The Kennebec Valley Art Association proudly announces the award-winning artists for Art2011, their annual juried art show, on view at the Harlow Gallery at 160 Water Street in Hallowell through May 28th. The KVAA’s annual juried show, now in its sixteenth year, draws artists to Hallowell from all over the state of Maine.

57 pieces of artwork representing 43 Maine artists were selected to be included in this year’s exhibit, out of a total of 327 works of art submitted by 120 artists. This years’ jurors where Véronique Plesch and Margaret Libby, both professors in the art department at Colby College.

Art2011 will be on view at the Harlow Gallery in Hallowell from May 6 to 28, 2011. During the exhibition gallery visitors are asked to help determine the winner of two additional prizes: the 1st place People’s Choice Award (a $100 cash sponsored by The Animal Wellness Center , and 2nd place People’s Choice Award – a free one year artist’s membership to the KVAA, will be awarded at the end of the exhibition based on popular vote. Visit the gallery and vote for your favorite!

Many thanks toTransco Business Technologies for sponsoring Art2011, and to our 2011 Season Sponsor, Kennebec Savings Bank, for helping to make Art2011 possible.

Prizes where awarded at the opening celebration on Friday, May 6, 2011 as follows:

Best in Show! a cash prize of $500 contributed by our
2011 exhibition season sponsor Kennebec Savings Bank



Best in Show awarded to Gwen Sylvester of Rockland for her acrylic painting entitled “The Mussel Eaters”


“The energetic paint handling and poetic subject matter creates a darkly hilarious painting. This is the work of an artist graced with an original and very personal voice. There is more to The Mussel Eaters than what might appear at first glance: the back of the canvas offers a wonderful surprise with a drawing of an ambiguous image of skulls and raccoons that echoes the painting on the canvas front. In addition to this macabre commentary, the drawing is accompanied by an inscription that adds yet another layer to this fascinating work.” ~ Véronique Plesch and Margaret Libby

Second Prize $250 Sponsored by DownEast Energy & Building Supply


Second Prize awarded to Linda Nichols Phillips of North Monmouth for her photograph entitled “In the Alley”


“This color photograph is superb in its composition and striking in its color scheme. Its anecdotal content and arresting directness complements its strong formality and its skillful and crisp handling of the photographic medium.” ~ Véronique Plesch and Margaret Libby

Third Prize $150 Savings Bank of Maine


Third prize awarded to Sarah Helen Harvey of Freeport for her documentary photograph entitled “Tom and Jeannie”


“Behind its apparent casualness, this photograph is characterized by its authentic tone and its immediacy. The viewer is enthralled by its voyeuristic dimension, which is handled in a gutsy manner. The photograph’s psychological charge is supported by a strong composition, a skillful placement of the sitters, and a captivating relationship of the sitters to the environing space.” ~ Véronique Plesch and Margaret Libby

Juror’s Choice prize, $150, Sponsored by Macomber, Farr and Whitten Insurance Services of Augusta


Margaret Libby’s Juror’s Choice prize awarded to Robin Brooks of Topsham for her pastel entitled “Her Good Coat”

Good Coat

“An old coat is invested with a heroic and yet poignant and personal dimension. The artist’s use of the pastel medium is masterful, bold and yet subtle, the handling is gestural and yet it convincingly conveys textures in a specific way. Similarly, although the palette is muted, it is enlivened by hints of bright pink.” ~ Margaret Libby

Juror’s Choice prize, $150, Sponsored by two members of the Kennbec Valley Board of Directors: Larry Brown and Peggy Siegle

Véronique Plesch’s Juror’s Choice prize awarded to Chris Augusta of Waldoboro for his pastel entitled “Waters of Perpetual Judgement”


“Magical and whimsical this pastel might remind the viewer of the Victorian fascination with the natural world, presented here in a dream-like manner. The superb handling of the difficult medium of pastel lends an ethereal and ephemeral dimension to this work.” ~ Véronique Plesch


Plus… Honorable Mentions awarded gift certificates and fine goods contributed by the following local businesses and organizations.  Please thank all of our sponsors for supporting the arts in central Maine!

Colby Museum of Art, Waterville,  Fogg Art Custom Framing of Wiscassett, The Framemakers of WatervilleGosline’s Hardware of Farmingdale, Grand Central Cafe of Waterville, The Maine Accent of Hallowell, Rail Road Square Cinema of Waterville

Honorable Mention winners are as follows:

Cynthia Ahlstrin of Winthrop for her altered book entitled “Little Black Book”

Carolyn Anderson of Littleton for her photograph entitled “My Daugher?”

S.E. Ballou of Buxton, for her oil painting entitled “Vase in Window”

Nancy Bixer of Hallowell for her drawing entitled “Around Midnight”

Brian Braley of Manchester for his acrylic painting entitled “The Gathering”

Kate Buehner of Gardiner, for mixed media piece entitled “Up Close”

Janet Favor of Gardiner, for her photograph entitled “Tea Glasses”

Sheri Parenteau of Swanville, for her photograph entitled “Rope”

Lesia Sochor of Brooks, for her oil painting entitled “TOTEM – For the Millworkers”

Thank you to all our terrific volunteers, without whose help our staff would have been helplessly buried in art! — especially to Larry Brown for technical support that made our first ever electronic entry process a great success, and  Michael Hudak, KVAA Vice President and Chair of the Exhibition Committee for hanging the exhibition, and also Larry Brown, Michael Hudak, Nancy Bixler and Deb Fahy for their help and support on jurying day at the Harlow, and of course, gratitude and many thanks to our fantastic jurors, Maggie Libby and Véronique Plesch!